Fire at the Skegness Herald Offices

SERIOUS FIRE’ AT SKEGNESS

DESTRUCTION OF A BUILDER’S SHOP, STABLES, &c.
GREAT DAMAGE TO THE “SKEGNESS HERALD” OFFICE

About a quarter to three o’clock on Wednesday afternoon a fire broke out in the workshop of Messrs. Creasey & Walker, builders, &c., and which at one time threatened to assume serious proportions.

The workshop occupied a portion of the building in which the “Herald ” Gas Power Printing Works have for some years past been carried on, is situated at the back of the Lion Hotel, and surrounded by other buildings. The workshop was, as such shops, generally are, well filled with shavings, wood, and other inflammable material.

The fire was first discovered by the by the compositors in the Herald office by the smell of something burning and seeing smoke coming in from the adjacent shop.

Miss Sykes discovered the fire and an alarm of fire was immediately given, the fire engine and brigade sent for, and willing assistance was at once rendered by the compositors in the Herald office, Mr. Sutton, and many others, in carry buckets of water and throwing them on the-burning shavings and wood to no avail.

With great presence mind, the lad who was sent for the fire engine made directly for the fire bell in Mr. George Dunkley’s shop on the Wainfleet Road.

The door being locked he secured a ladder in the yard and in the shop through the window and vigorously rang the bell.

The brigade in a commendably short space of time answered to the call, and were soon on the scene of the fire.

By this time the fire had rapidly spread, the whole of the contents of the shop were on fire, and the blames issuing forth from the roof above.
The rafters and the other woodwork of the roof being very dry burnt like matchwood, and the fire spread with amazing rapidity.

Fortunately there was a plentiful supply of water from the hydrant at the Lion Hotel corner, and the brigade played upon it with the hose with all their might.

For some time, however, the fire continued to spread, the flames having got such a hold of the building and it was feared that the Herald office, with its valuable contents of machinery, type, &c., would be totally destroyed.

Happily there is a brick partition between the shop and the printing office, and in order to out off file communication from the top some of the firemen, assisted by others, got on the roof of the Herald office and tore off the slates and woodwork, thus cutting off the communication between the two.

This they did at great risk and a certain amount of danger to themselves, while others assisted from the inside.

It is gratifying to ourselves to be able to state that thin action on the part of the brigade had the desired effect.

The captain of the brigade, Mr. Sills fell through the ceiling into the printing office but fortunately did not injure himself. The hose was kept playing on the roof of the Herald office to prevent the woodwork catching fire from the great bent, and thus prevent the flames from spreading as it was plainly seen that no portion of the other part of the building or its contents could be saved.

The roof of the shop soon after fell it, with a crash, and now it was almost a certainty that the fire would be prevented from spreading and the Herald office saved from destruction.

The brigade thenceforth played on the burning wood and the partition wall, but it was some time before the fire was got under. The workshop and its contents, and the stables underneath the same with their contents, were totally destroyed.

A large number of willing hands rendered every assistance possible to remove the contents of the printing offices, but unfortunately in doing so a valuable machine was rendered useless, formes were saved intact, type and paper damaged with the water, &c., incurring serious loss to the proprietor. Fortunately the news formes were saved intact, but columns of news and other matter for the present issue of the Herald were seriously damaged, besides “copy” being lost or destroyed, and we must therefore ask the forbearance of our readers if” the present issue of our journal is published a few hours later than usual.

We must give the fire brigade, under the superintendence of Mr. S. Bills, the credit of, saving our offices, for without the brigade and a plentiful supply of water from the Earl of Scarbrough’s waterworks, the offices, type, machinery, &c., must have been totally destroyed.

And, furthermore, if our offices had been burnt the fire would undoubtedly have extended to other adjacent buildings, and the conflagration been a most serious one.

To all who assisted we tender our most sincere thanks. Fortunately the whole of the property was insured in the Midland Counties Fire Office.

A very large crowd assembled to witness the fire, the origin of which is unknown.

Source Skegness Herald 1890

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